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June 08, 2011


Deb S.

I use a spare ceramic tile that I had laying around as my iron rest for my small iron.


Yes, a ceramic tile works well - I found it sometimes wanted to roll off becasue of the cord. This was the first version of the tool and it looks like a different style. I ended up putting a glass or coffee mug on the tile and setting the tool tip in the glass and that worked well. I hope you can get a replacement from Clover - this can't be the first time this has happened! Good luck with your new adventure!!!!!


The freezer paper on top is used with needle turn applique. You can use it as a guide as you turn your edges under.


I use freezer paper simply as a template for needle turning my shapes. I iron them onto the right side of the fabric, trace around them with either black or white pencil then cut a generous 1/8th inch around each one. When ready to place the piece I remove the paper and stitch. I found all the gluing, starching, pressing too many steps and got far less stitching done to suit me. I have a teeny iron too but have only used it once. I think I used a saucer to rest it on. Good luck.


I do a variation of this method that uses a washable glue stick to secure the seam allowance to the non-shiny part of the freezer paper. It is fast and easy, and doesn't melt things. The piece must then be dampened at the area with the glue after the applique is stitched to remove the paper.


I learned to do applique with the freezer paper on the right side of the fabric, too. Then you turn the seam allowance under and use washable glue to tack it down to itself (you could do the starch and iron method here instead). Now you have the shape to applique and you can just peel the freezer paper off the top (and reuse it) instead of prying it out of a half sewn shape.

Nan S.

I don't know if this will work in this particular case, but Sharon Schamber recommends using Mr. Clean Magic Eraser to clean the applique glue from your iron. I have done this many times, and it works beautifully. You can use it when the iron is hot or cold. Just dampen the sponge and run the iron over it (with a towel beneath) until it's clean. Good luck!


when i bought my Clover mini-iron, the shop included a little ironware crock (about the same size as a kitchen utensil crock) to put it in (tip down) and it has never managed to get away from me ... i think an over-sized coffee mug would work just as well (might even require a trip to your local coffee shop - ha ha ha)!!!


Nicole, I have one of these handy dandy irons and I use a coffee cup to rest the iron in when not in use. Doesn't hurt the cup and it doesn't hurt the iron. Those little stands are a joke. Lizzie


Like Helen, I use the freezer paper on top with a needle turn method. I then finger press the fabric under as I move around the applique piece sewing it down. I pin the pieces in place using short applique pins that are less inclined to snag the thread while I'm sewing. I like the instant gratification of tracing, pressing the paper on and sewing. And when I'm done, I just peel the paper from the top. I find that the freezer paper stablizes the fabric so it can be rolled under just as I want it for straight lines and smooth curves. I find that this works for me on any piece larger than 1/2 inch or so.

Diane Linford

I own that little iron, but haven't used it yet. Thanks for the caution, and thanks for all the remarks with hints on how to avoid that melting.


I use a Hobbico Custom Sealing Iron. I don't use the stand that comes with gets too hot. I have a heavy duty stand that I bought separately. I also put my Best Press starch in a special fabric 'pen'. I used to use a brush, but using the pen, I can be absolutely surgical when it comes to starch application.

I use freezer paper sheets, and I double them for crisp edges. I draw on the shiny side then iron two sheets together with my drawn lines ironed to the dull side of another sheet. That way, there is still a shiny side to iron on the back of my fabric. It is best to iron the freezer paper sheet together on a mat that has a Teflon surface so it doesn't stick. Have fun!


Check out this post for a suggestion.

Barbara Anne

Folks have posted such great suggestions here!

Sorry about your mini iron. Hope the Mr. Clean product works or Clover gives you another iron for free.


Deb Myers

ceramic tile to the rescue for sure!!

Sandy (Strlady)

I'm with you on the freezer paper on top. Why? Reading the comments I can see how it's useful for needleturn applique. I tried it a few times when I used glue to turn the edges under but I found that the edges of my piece were never as crisp as when I put the freezer paper on the wrong side. So, I stopped using it on the right side.
On the iron... Rowenta has a cleaner for thier irons that is like a paste you put on a towel. You then heat the iron up and 'iron' the paste onto the sole. After a bit of rubbing the soleplate is clean. You then rub the iron on a soft cloth that sort of polishes it. I was wondering if heating the iron and using something like that would get the plastic off. I have the Hobbico iron but I find it gets ridiculously hot. I honestly feel I need an oven mit to hadle it! LOL!
Softexpressions has a Craft Iron Tile holder that looks to be a better solution than the plastic.


The only time I use freezer paper on top is when I want to do needle-turn. It simply shows you where to turn under and helps you keep things lined up. I've done it both ways, it just depends on the project. Good Luck! :)

Julie in WA

Did you see what happened to Victoria (over at Bumble Beans) and her little clover iron? Check it out here
Another cautionary don't want to burn your fabric or even worse...your home!


The best idea I have seen for resting those little irons on is a potato masher - the kind like our grandmothers used! I've also seen some holders at the local quilt shows. I'm not sure if they are manufactured or a home hobbyist has made them, but they have a wood base and a ceramic piece with a curve for resting the iron on. I think I have one around here somewhere........

Pam P

My Clover mini came with several interchangeable "tips" - if you can't get the melted plastic off, maybe you can find a replacement tip? Or email me & I'll send you mine - I have a large & a small tip & don't really need both.


Nicole, Have you ever tried Kim Diehl's applique method? It is wonderful! She uses freezer paper too, but instead of ironing the shiny side to the wrong side of the fabric, you put a little glue, using a glue stick, on the matte side of the paper, glue that to the wrong side of the fabric, then using a hot iron, you iron the seam allowance to the shiny side of the paper and it will stick. No starch, no brush, etc. That is my favorite applique method. If you have on of her books, she explains how to do it. If you ever have a chance to take a class from her, I would highly recommend it.


I iron the freezer paper onto the back of my fabric, then draw around the applique. Then I cut it out leaving a scant 1/4"of fabric. The freezer paper template is reusable for several times. I then needle turn. I think this is much quicker than what you are doing. I have friends who do your method but they use washable glue instead of starch. They just press it down with their fingers-no iron. I love applique, it gives me something I can work on while I watch TV.

Liz Arbaugh

Here's a link to a 3 part tutorial on how to use freezer paper on top. The rest of tutorial links can be found on the blog archives for April.


Hi Nicole,
I use a travel style ceramic mug (that actually doesn't work for travelling) which is very wide on the bottom. I just stick my mini-iron in there. Because the bottom is wider than the top, it doesn't tip over. Everything I read when I got the iron said to throw the stand away. There are some wooden stands available that attach to the plastic one, but I already had the mug. :)



I use the freezer paper method that you are demonstrating but I double up the freezer paper - iron two pieces together (waxy side to a dull side) - before I cut out the shapes. This seems to give you a crisper and bit more stable edge when you starch and press your 1/4" over. I have had great success with this method.

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